You know I have always had trouble with this holiday? I have seen so much pain in my family that seemed to be sourced from jolly saint Nick. Or at least that's the way I saw it as a child. Older and wiser now I know that the majority of it were symptoms of my Parents addictions, their own childhood traumas in their ways all piled up and creating a vortex of misery that seemed to be timed with the yule tide. That being said I had a very good and pleasant Christmas, nothing special mind you nothing to explode in orgasmic cheer about, but happy family memories. The kind you think about while sipping a warm drink on a cold day in a quiet place.

I have been amazed at the last  years, I lost the majority of my worldly possessions in trade to survive a creeping death, I survived that same challenge and became a father twice over. I dwell on my legacy to them all of the time. There are so many more memories bouncing around my brain of my parents failures its hard some nights to remember things like; my mother nursing me through an ear infection through the night without ever loosing her temper, just rubbing my back, my dad taking me to fast Fridays for an entire summer, my mom driving a temperamental teenager with a broken heart deep into san fransisco to attempt to scream out my declared love for my forbidden interest (now my spouse) , or finally like my dad hurdling through a mountain pass because his drama queen of a son decided he could brake 12" beams with his anger and his elbow...

I love my parents. They were faulted and their decisions led to abuse that has plagued myself and more heavily my siblings form the abuse that landed on them, but I still love them.

Sacrifice came naturally to me and I spent half my hours or more over the last 15 years trying to avoid the deaths that they were marching into like lemmings. I failed, not because of a lack of effort, but because you cannot save a human being who doesn't want to save themselves in the first place. Now my horde of sisters, and my brother slowly piece to get more normal lives a bit each day, for some sobriety and mental disease if their ghost of persecution, others of us struggles with the balancing act of being a parent and avoiding being our own parents, without the moral and spiritual compass that I imagine a good parent would have instilled in the earliest years of memory.

Now tonight I find out my birth grand father died, I say both because I had a step grand father as well. Neither got along with my parents and in all honesty I hardly new the man, he was hard to talk tom and despite yearning for his contact as a child, as an adult the timing, and feelings never seem to mesh well for me to garner a relationship. I am still sad though. Sad because he died a painful sickly death, sad because he left behind my step grandmother and he was her world this day and age. Humans should not pass this way. I want to die knowing my time on earth as a father, husband, teacher, brother, and artist were spent well. A person should die a timely death not filled with regret, fear, and self loathing. It should be with satisfaction and the comfort of the family and friends we built as our time on this earth moved.

Now what do I say though? What direction do I move when I think of my family or who I want to be remembered as? Has it changed from yesterday? I do not know. I only know I am weary of death coming to men half their normal weight, and burdened with the price of breathing as long as they had.

I have a bucket list. It is not long, I wanted to see Camille graduate Kindergarten, that is a few short months away (I will have to elaborate this one I have an amazing son as well.), I wanted to see my comics get to print, which has happened although in a very minor press run. (I am expanding on this one.) I want to Ride on more time with dad. I want to carry his ashes on my hand restored/modded harly to ley them to rest, and I want to make sure I am not a burden to my children and a source of tears...

@*#&$ you Fate, people do not deserve to feel alone and so scared when they go. I refuse to do so. I will go when I will be surrounded by my children, my family my friends. I will not follow my father into his death, I will not reflect my mothers, and I will not be unknown to my grandchildren should I be lucky enough to hear the pitter patter of their little feat before the reaper finally comes.

"Dying at 27 because you aint no punk ain't cool, dying at 80 surrounded by a hundred grand thats cool." Richard Pryor, Harlem nights.